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A few memories of hunting as a little girl include traipsing through thick brush at night with hounds in pursuit of coons in North Dakota, and then some time sitting in a tress stand hunting whitetail. While my dad was not an avid hunter, I remember having the passion for the sport from a young age.

ashley2

As a college student, I choose to live in Montana in part because of the wonderful hunting opportunities.  I would go hunting by myself and spent a lot of time in the woods.  For all my efforts, though, I must admit I was not very successful.    Through a great friend, I learned more about hunting, and slowly developed my skills over the course of many years.  As the time passed, I became more and more successful.  My evolution as a hunter has helped me to harvest many different types of game including bear, whitetail, mule deer, grouse, elk, antelope, and also a wolf.  I am both a bow hunter and a rifle hunter, enjoying the challenges of getting close and the skill required to harvest game at long ranges. 

ashley3

I am happy to say that just as my hunting skills evolved over time, so did my relationship with the friend who taught me to hunt.  I am now blessed to call this man my husband.  Together, we enjoy the outdoors and we are raising our son to do the same!

ashley4

Contest information:

 

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my essay:

 

www.extremehuntress.com/1703/ashley-westphal/